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Businesses in Groningen, the Netherlands: More Bike Traffic, Please

11:05 AM EDT on September 23, 2013

What happens when transportation planners try to accommodate cyclist traffic? If you're in Groningen, the Netherlands, where over half of all trips are made by bike, you get complaints from business owners -- who don't want cyclists diverted from their street.

David Hembrow of A View From the Cycle Path says students are flooding the Zonnelaan bike path to Zernike Campus, leading planners to recommend alternate "smart routes," which are separated from autos and have no traffic lights. Some merchants along the Zonnelaan path aren't having it. Hembrow explains the video:

The first person interviewed says that when he started his business 25 years ago research showed that 10000 cyclists per day were using the Zonnelaan route. That's why they located there. The number of cyclists past his door has more than doubled since they started the business. Like other business owners on the route, he's disappointed that the local government is redirecting passing traffic away from his door as this could result in less business. The local government has organised a meeting to try to address these concerns.

In the Netherlands, shopkeepers like cyclists.

A TV news spot where the "man on the street" complains that there aren't enough bikes. Has the world gone topsy-turvy?

Also today: Reflections -- or laments -- on U.S. train station design at The Urbanophile and Second Avenue Sagas. Treehugger wonders how China can make trucks safer for cyclists and pedestrians while Canada and the States can't afford it. BikeWalkLee Blog has an update from Florida, where the Lee County MPO has adopted a street safety plan. And Baltimore Spokes links to a report that says America's standard crosswalk is "essentially not visible" to motorists.

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